I’m not proud of myself. I waste money, even though I’m trying to buy a house. I just limit myself to only wasting money on certain things. I don’t buy nail polish for example. Ever. I work in a restaurant for pete’s sake, it chips before I’ve even walked through the door.
I think it’s important to have a little wiggle room in your budget for the things that you love. It stops you from burning out and falling off the saving wagon. You still have to live your life. You can’t claim those years you spent living on pasta back, once you’ve reached your goal. It’s shame but that’s (literally) life.
So here’re a list of 6 things I waste my money on:
In my defence, I get the cheap £5.50 stuff from Tesco. It tastes so good, but is lower in alcohol that regular wine and doesn’t give me as a bad a hangover (just a kind of spaced out feeling, rather than wanting to claw my own head off). We sometimes stockpile it a bit when Tesco have the ‘buy 6 get 25% off’ deal on, but BE CAREFUL or you’ll just end up drinking more.
Listen to me on this one: I’m wise when it comes to alcohol. I know my schizz.
2. Fresh Flowers
Again, I don’t just throw money at it willy-nilly. I get alstromeria, because not only are they pretty cheap, they have this bizarre quirk: they die but look exactly the same. I once had a £3.50 bunch that lasted for three weeks without losing condition at all (I tend to change the water every few days, or once it looks a but murky, and add a drop of washing up liquid). I took them out of the vase to change the water, and every single petal dropped off, and I was left with a bunch of stems in my hand. They were as dead as a dodo, but still looked fine (until I went and ruined everything. Classic me).
Fresh flowers make everyone happier, and I find they make me more inclined to keep my house in order, which in turn makes me feel more productive. And it’s tulip system at the moment, yessss.
I’ve done a post on saving money on skincare, but there are some things worth splurging on. If you like the Pixi Glow Tonic but not the price, try these Nip+Fab Pads . I got them for half price from Superdrug, but if you check out the link I put before (here it is again) Amazon do them for £7.47 permanently, which is half price. Yessss – ta, Amazon, you babe, you. Ignore the ‘extreme’ bit and the ‘night’ bit. Read this post by Caroline Hirons if you don’t believe me. They’re just good all-rounder acid pads. They’re also exceptionally moist (sorry, that was gross) so I cut them in half, thus doubling their longevity.
Although I personally don’t consider this a waste of money, it’s not a necessity by any stretch of the imagination.
4. Cinema cards
We pay £34 a month for the two of us to have unlimited cinema cards. We save money because we go a lot.£34 a month is waaay less than a lot of people’s entertainment/socialising budget. We just have to go steady on the popcorn. We used to eat out a lot after the cinema (we often go and see two or three films on one day), but now we make do with Subway, which is filling and not particularly expensive.
Going to and from volunteering takes up a fair hunk of money in petrol, especially if we then choose to take a dog to the beach – we can spend up to £10 a weekend, but for us it’s totally worth it – we have a whale of a time (hopefully our charges do too) and we get exercise.
Dogs provide you with a non-negotiable exercise routine, cats (may) catch pests for you. You know what rabbits do? Sweet FA. They are free-loading, scrounging little beasts. Technically ever penny I spend on them (which actually isn’t much – read more about that here) is a waste. Still, they’re cute and they certainly didn’t choose to live here and have me buy them stuff. For all they know, they’re hostages. They’re quite capable of surviving in the wild (kinda. For a week or so), without needing any special skills.
These are all things we account for in our joint bank account – there is no option to go over budget for them because the bank would say no. Sometimes we have a re-jig, for example if there’s a special offer on rabbit food or something, we’ll buy it in bulk. We’ve also devised a plan for if everything goes belly-up and we have to kick some of these things to the curb. First to go would be the Cinema cards and the flowers. That wouldn’t be too much of a bother. Prosecco would be next (or rationed to a bottle a week between us *sob*). Obviously if we had to go and live in a cardboard box, the rabbits would have to come too (EVEN THOUGH THEY’D PROBABLY EAT THE DAMN BOX), they’re family, albeit the kind of family that prefer to have as little contact with you as possible, but still poo on your rug.
This may be updated over time to reflect my current fave money wasters, but I’m happy with my list. It’s not like I’m binge-eating caviar or chartering my own private jet. ATM anyway.